An assessment of basic nutrition knowledge of adolescents with eating disorders and their parents
Int J Adolesc Med Health
Abstract Objective: This study aims to determine and compare the level of basic nutrition knowledge of adolescents with eating disorders and their parents to adolescents without eating disorders and their parents. MATERIALS AND METHODS: This six-month convenience based survey recruited a total of 182 adolescents with and without an eating disorder and their parents. The surveys were conducted in a suburban adolescent medicine office. Main outcome measures were based on the 18 basic nutrition questions, while means, standard deviations, Wilcoxon Rank Sum Test, and chi2 were all employed for the analysis. RESULTS: None of the groups correctly answered more than half of the questions. In terms of the percentage of correct responses, there was a statistically significant difference between adolescents with eating disorders and their parents compared with adolescents without an eating disorder and their parents. Fewer than 16% of respondents in each group correctly answered the recommended daily caloric balance of fats, carbohydrates, and proteins. CONCLUSIONS: There is a deficiency in basic nutrition knowledge among adolescents with and without eating disorders and their parents. A significant increase in basic nutrition education needs to occur in order to increase the understanding of what is a "healthy" diet.
Faculty; Northwell Researcher
School of Medicine; Northwell Health
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